Thursday, August 19, 2010

Oh...Dr. Laura...

There were times I actually kinda liked her as she occasionally could talk some sense...but then she would start talking crazy and we'd have to turn her off.

It was one of those moments when I heard the clip from her broadcast the other day. A woman calls - a black woman with a white husband who doesn't say anything when his friends make insensitive remarks. Dr. Laura automatically thinks the caller is being overly sensitive. And then she goes on about how "black comics on HBO" and such say "Ni**er, ni**er, ni**er" all the time, basically trying to make the argument that perhaps there is a double standard as white people can just never say "the N-word" (and rightly so). Now I get trying to not be over sensitive and wondering why black people still use the n-word (pretty much to take back a derogatory term and make it their own...but it's still ugly to me), but then, when the caller remarked on Dr. Laura's rather free use of "ni**er", Dr. Laura picked up that shovel and started digging her hole with "Don't NAACP me!". She then kept digging, telling the caller that she was oversensitive and that if she didn't have a sense of humor she shouldn't have married outside her race.

And now she is going to leave her radio show and claims that she is fighting for her 1st Amendment Rights...just as she did back in 2000 when she got in trouble for ranting against gay people saying that they were an abomination and essentially that they needed to be fixed and she knew some good programs that did just that.

Yes, you have a 1st Amendment right to spout your bigoted nonsense, but you have to remember that, like with all of us, there are consequences...particularly when you spout ugliness.

The real problem here is how conservatives are sticking up for Dr. Laura.Conservatives have been encouraging race baiting ever since Obama became president. They can't handle the change and are doing everything in their power to make it impossible for him to do his job properly. It is a sad state of affairs when they, under the guise of promoting free speech, merely support and perpetuate race baiting and fearmongering. Is that really the best thing for our country? Personally, I think not.


Peace --Alex

'Cuz it really just more posturing...

I am getting real tired of people succumbing to the conservative fear mongering and posturing when it comes to the "Ground Zero Mosque".

Again, all it takes is a handful of words, Ground Zero Mosque, and people get freaked out, and then Fox news and other such folk start fanning the flames of fear, and next thing you know Harry Reid and Howard Dean, rather than try to put out the fire, pick up a fan and join the hell in.

I was here that day. I remember looking down Lexington, Park, Madison, Fifth and Sixth Avenues and seeing the billowing smoke. My husband (who I hadn't met yet) was trapped underground on the subway. I know many others who saw one or both of the towers fall and/or saw people jump from the towers.

We were attacked. By terrorists. Now these terrorists, happened to be Muslim. Not all Muslims are extremist or terrorists. Some of them are in our military. Many are community leaders. Our government does business with Muslims (Saudi Arabia, etc) and we are actually fighting a war not just against them but FOR them-yes, FOR two countries full of innocent Muslims. We are helping everyday Muslims to fight extremist Muslims. Just a reminder...

Also, even though it should not matter, the Cordoba center is a) not being built at Ground Zero, but rather two blocks away, and b) is not a mosque. It is a community center that has a prayer room. And a pool. oooooo...they'll be swimming...

There are strip clubs, churches and tacky shops and somehow they are all allowed in the neighborhood, but not this community center. (which has actually been there since December 2009, they are just expanding.)

I understand how people are hurting. We, sadly, remain at war and extremists are still out there. But we have to remember that just because a community center is being built, it does not mean that it is going to be populated with extreme Muslims. If ever there was a time for tolerance, it would be now. There is enough division and fear out there, why must various politicians and pundits encourage it?

Just boggles my mind that people would rather listen to the fearmongerers than look into this themselves, show some tolerance and actually try to eradicate the hate and bigotry rather than bolstering it.


Peace --Alex

Friday, August 06, 2010

If only they knew....

While nearly everyone that I know is applauding the overturning of Prop 8 in California (and hoping that if it does get to the Supreme Court that the court realizes that opponents of gay marriage are making only a religious argument, not a legal one), there are those who are not. And I am not just talking about folks on the religious right who believe that homosexuality is a perversion and all that nonsense, but those who are perhaps merely anti-big government and don't want the government forcing yet another new idea down their throats. Well, I've got things to say to both these groups.

To the anti-government people: The Defense of Marriage Act was the government forcing the idea of marriage as one man and one woman down our collective throats. The people who voted for Prop 8 and are fighting to keep it, were also forcing an idea of marriage down our collective throats. I understand states rights and understand that Prop 8 was voted in, but in this case, it still does not make it right. It took government intervention for segregation to fall, and for mixed race couples to be able to marry, thus it appears that it will take government intervention to knock down this last fear-built wall - the one keeping gay people from moving forward with their families.

To the people opposed to "the gays" getting married: I grew up in Massachusetts - the home of the Kennedy's, the American Revolution and the first state to allow gay marriage - and then I moved to New York City - the capital of Liberalelitistan (or perhaps just a modern day Sodom and Gomorrah), thus I have never lived in a place or just with people who really thought homosexuality was something that immediately condemned one to hell and a life of perversion. Not to say that the word "faggot" wasn't thrown around my high school, but as things changed in the late 80's and early 90's, gay students felt more free to come out and suffered much less (that I know of). The year after I graduated, a Gay/Straight Alliance was started at my high school and one of the teachers came out. Thus, I just can't comprehend people who think gay people are perverts, pedophiles and believe that they are "recruiting" children and adults into their lifestyle.
I just wish you all - those opposed to gay marriage - could meet couples like my friends Doug and Shawn, who are generous, warm, loving people. Doug is an actor who, between gigs, finds time to coach actors how market themselves better, recommends people for work and sends everybody he has ever worked with or heck had contact with a birthday card every year. His husband Shawn is a financial planner who helps everyone from high end clients who have hundreds of thousands of dollars to invest to those of us who can barely put aside $10 a week for a savings account and are trying to get of debt. (They have been together for six years, married for four.) Paul is the music director at the church I sing at and not only has he been extremely patient with my vocal inconsistencies and sight reading issues for over two years, but he and his husband Edd take in "orphans"- those of us who can't get home for Easter, Thanksgiving and Christmas-every year. (They have been together for 29 years and married for 2 and 1/2.) My high school friend Lynn and her wife Allison have a company called Glitter and Razz, that holds camps and classes for children and grown-ups, getting them involved in the arts, and Lynn is also a co-founder of a theatre company which recently did a show sharing the voices of the older generation of gays and lesbians. (They have been married for four years.) Paul is co-founder and director at one of the top theatres in Boston and was also a teacher for years before taking on his company full time. His husband Jeff is a social worker and, several years ago, they adopted an Ecuadorean orphan. (They have been together for over twenty years.) AND I can't forget the student minister, Leslie, at MABC who not only can PREACH, but served his country in the Navy and has been with his partner for several years as well.
To me, and people in their communities, they are all lovely people in committed relationships with families and who do nothing more than spread more love in the world, yet, depending on where they are, they may not be allowed to take advantage of the legal benefits of marriage, simply because they are gay. I do not get this. I truly just do. not. get this.
And honestly, I would like to believe that if all these people from NOM met my friends, or heck just observed their day-to-day lives, and other such couples in their own communities, perhaps they would get over their hate-filled hoo ha themselves. But sadly, that just may not be the case. It took a LONG time for desegregation to be accepted, a long time for mixed-race marriages to be gradually accepted and we all know it took looooong time for a black/mixed-race man to become President (don't even get me started on how race is still affecting his presidency). It took government intervention for two of the former to happen and it will take government intervention to legalize gay marriage and bring its acceptance gradually into the fore.
As much as I would like to just say "Suck it up, people, change is here" I can't. Just as I can't comprehend the world they live in, they can't - and don't want - to comprehend mine, at present. Instead, I would just like to remind these bitter, angry folk that God - and marriage, at least the way I was taught - is about love, and the LGBT community does indeed know all about love, faith and family. I would also like to remind them, that we do have a separation of church and state in this country, and that this case is about the civil legal rights of gay people, not a moral religious issue. Legally, gay people have a right to be married. Iceland, Canada, Sweden, Norway, Spain, Portugal, The Netherlands, Belgium, Argentina, and SOUTH AFRICA even (they've come a long way in 16 years) have accepted gay marriage as entire nations, not just in part. And three of those nations have Catholic majorities. These nations have not suddenly sunk or crumbled into the ocean, had a mass rash of heterosexual divorce, or burst into flame. They are alive and well and moving along just will we, when gay marriage gets accepted, we have a big party and then clean up and get back to living our lives...and look for jobs. Don't you think that's the bigger issue at hand?


Peace --Alex